Tesla Motors Inc (TSLA) has sued German auto parts maker Hoerbiger Automotive Comfort Systems, which was to supply working doors for its new Model X car. The U.S. firm sued the supplier after it failed to supply the doors for the SUV, says a report from The Wall Street Journal.
Tesla incurred huge damages
Hoerbiger has been accused of misrepresenting that it was capable of delivering functioning doors. For this reason, Tesla had to switch to a new supplier just a few months before the promised date of delivery of the first cars to customers. Since the change took place at the eleventh hour, Tesla had to pay a premium for the doors to its new supplier.
“Tesla incurred millions of dollars in damages, including, but not limited to costs of re-tooling the entire vehicle in order to support a different engineering solution,” the lawsuit reads.
According to The WSJ, Hoerbiger was seeking an additional payment from Tesla for work it claims to have performed but did not get paid for. In the lawsuit, Tesla asked the court to stop Hoerbiger from asking for more money and declare that it didn’t breach its contracts. The automaker also seeks damages and attorney’s fees.
Falcon-wing doors not easy to make
The Model X’s falcon-wing doors are one of its signature features, and producing them is a difficult task. Last year, the company’s CEO, Elon Musk, admitted that the Model X is the hardest car to build in the world. In the fourth quarter, the EV firm made just 507 Model X cars and shipped 208. Tesla’s shares took a dip earlier this year because of the low volume of Model X deliveries.
In early 2012, the company first showed off a prototype of the car, but it didn’t begin the deliveries until September 2015. The delay was due to many reasons, such as the doors and other engineering decisions. Getting the doors right is a really painful task, and this lawsuit gives a glimpse into that.
It is not the first time Tesla and Musk are involved in legal disputes related to suppliers. In early 2008, supplier Magna Powertrain sued the EV firm after it decided to use transmissions from another company for its first Roadster car, which too got delayed. Tesla currently has its focus on increasing Model X production and is aiming to produce 238 units on a weekly basis.